Friday, July 17, 2009

At what point does "enough" truly become enough?

Once again, I'm reading today's local newsrag, and they have a nifty little article about eight people being arrested on drug and weapons charges. Sounds like a good thing, because drugs and guns are bad, right? Well, maybe. Maybe not. I'll let you be the judge on this one.

For starters, let's take a look at what was confiscated (read: STOLEN) by the police.

First, there was slightly more than 3 ounces of cocaine taken from one home.

Then, there was a pound of marijuana taken from another, as well as "several handguns" and one "sawed-off" shotgun, taken from another.

In total, there were eight people arrested.

Still sounds good, right? I mean, we got all this dope and all these guns off the street, right?

Well, on the surface, it might sound good. In reality, it sounds like you and I got royally screwed on this deal.

But wait, we got several handguns, a sawed-off shotgun, and a whole bunch of drugs off the street! How can this be a bad thing? We're protecting the public! How could this ever be a "bad thing"?

Well, let me break it down for you, once again. Here's the skinny, plain and simple...

First and foremost, there were AT LEAST SIX DIFFERENT AGENCIES working on this operation. FOR MORE THAN TWO YEARS.

Let's do the math here. Let's assume that the cops make as much as I do, which ain't exactly much. Let's also assume that there were only one cop PER AGENCY on this operation, with nothing but their yearly salary taken into account. That's 360,000 dollars. Yes, you read that right. That's 3/8 of a MILLION dollars.

Now, let's take a look at what was taken. We're talking, ON THE HIGH SIDE, $4k worth of drugs, one shotgun, and "several" handguns.

Let's say they found nine handguns valued at $500 a piece, and one shotgun also at the same value...and that's a very liberal estimate, considering the quality of people we're dealing with. We're talking about $5k worth of weaponry.

We just spent, at a minimum, $360,00 dollars...for a net worth, at a maximum, $9,000. We arrested eight people. 360 thousand, minus 9 thousand, leaves 351 thousand dollars. Divide that by eight people, and you have 43k+ per person.

Keep in mind, this is a liberal estimate of capture v. a conservative estimate of expenditure.

When I looked at my check stub yesterday, I saw how much I was being hit for in income taxes...and I can't help but wonder what my share of this was.

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